Monday, January 30, 2012

Learn to Snowshoe Workshop

Now that we finally have some snow it is a great time to pick up a new winter sport. Here is an awesome opportunity. 

Learn to Snowshoe Workshop
Schumacher Farm Park  (Hwy 19 Waunakee)
Sunday, February 19 from 2-4 pm

Want to try snowshoeing but don’t have snowshoes? Then this workshop is for you.  Learn how to snowshoe at this FREE (donations accepted) family friendly event.

Representatives from Fontana Sports will teach basic snowshoe skills and provide tips on what to wear. Snowshoes will be provided or you can bring your own. Members of the Madison Area Outdoor Meetup Group will also assist and lead short hikes on the prairie. Afterwards, warm up with hot chocolate around the bonfire.

Everyone is welcome to enjoy the trails, whether attending the workshop or not.

Schumacher Farm Park is a 100 acre open-air museum and conservancy dedicated to preserving old-time rural farm ways of the 1920s and 1930s. It is run by the Friends of Schumacher Farm Park in cooperation with Dane County Parks and the Marcella Pendall Schumacher Trust.

Register at
Schumacher Farm Park is located at 5682 Hwy 19 on the eastern edge of Waunakee. For more information contact 849-4559 or visit

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Parfrey's Glen

It has been awhile since I have been to Parfrey's Glen State Natural Area as it was closed for the summer and into the fall after being washed out by flooding.  I'm happy to announce that it had reopened and in my opinion is better than ever.  The boardwalk that previously was the trail through the gorge is gone leaving hikers to their own devises for stream crossings and scrambling over rocks. I definitely recommend waterproof boots and trekking poles, especially this time of year when the rocks have snow and ice on them.  The slick and rugged trail rewards you with spectacular with views through a narrow rocky ravine, with a stream running through the base.

It is located on County DL (off of 113 in Merrimac) just a few miles from Devil's Lake State Park.

I also recommend a stop at Wollersheim Winery in Prairie du Sac on the way home!

Since pictures always tell a better story here are a few.

Watercress was abundant in the slower
moving offshoots of the stream.

Spectacular ice formations in the water.

View of the glen...the little red dot is my friend Em.
End of the trail.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Trout Unlimited Icebreaker Event

The Southern Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited will be holding their annual Icebreaker event on Saturday January 14th.  Fontana Sports Manager/Fly Fishing Guru Craig Amaker will be presenting from 9:30-10:30am:

“Fly Fishing Southern Wisconsin”
The talk will cover all the fly fishing opportunities in the area.  From trout on our spring creeks, to small mouth bass and other warm water species on the Wisconsin River, and salmon and steelhead/lake-run brown trout on the Lake Michigan tributaries. Proceeds from the event support the Southern Wisconsin Chapter of Trout Unlimited, and help pay for stream restoration and purchase conservation easements in southern Wisconsin.

In addition to Craig's talk there will be other speakers, door prizes, raffles, fly tying demonstrations, entomology demonstration, and a kids room.  Doors open at 8:30 am.

The event will be held at the Promega Biotechnology Center, 5445 East Cheryl Parkway, Fitchburg.

Visit for more details.

Monday, January 02, 2012

New Years Resolutions


Anyone have a new years resolution to be more active or get in better shape?  Think about picking up a new outdoor sport!

Running is easy, fun,and doesn't require the snow that seems to be eluding us so far this winter.  We have many seasoned runners at Fontana that can help you pick out clothing and footwear, talk about training, and share experiences. 

Cross Country Skiing is a fantastic low impact activity that is also a great workout.  Although we don't have snow yet there is plenty of winter left.  We an help pick out the perfect skis for you as well as point you to the best trails in the area. 

Nordic Walking is not that well known but awesome exercise.  Simply put, it is walking with poles and can burn up to 40% more calories that just going for a walk.  Stop in and find out more.

Hiking/Walking is the most accessible of all activities.  We are lucky to be in an area with many beautiful parks very close.  Devils Lake, Indian Lake, Blue Mounds, Governor Nelson, Governor Dodge, or simply the lake shores of Madison.

Whatever you need to stay more active this year: pedometers, watches, clothing and gear, information, or motivation stop in Fontana and let our staff help you with your goals!  We wish you a happy, healthy new year!

Also a big shout out to Fontana Sports owner Judith Hutchinson.  It was an early resolution but she completed her first 5K this year running the Thanksgiving Berbee Derby in under 40 minutes!  Way to go Judith!